ISLAMABAD/KARACHI: The federal government has extended the tenure of Usman Yousaf Mobin as chairman of the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) for three years on Thursday, even as the Sindh High Court (SHC) restrained the government from issuing the notification of the appointment till further orders.
According to the notification, the federal government reappointed Mobin as NADRA chairman “on existing terms and conditions for three years in terms of Section 3 (5) of the NADRA Ordinance, 2000, with immediate effect and until further orders”.
Mobin’s tenure expired on February 4, 2018 and the Ministry of Interior had recommended his name to Prime Minster Shahid Khaqan Abbasi for the second time. He was previously working as chief technology officer in NADRA.
Also on Thursday, while hearing a lawsuit filed by a citizen Rashid Qureshi against the Interior Ministry for fixing 55 years as the maximum age for a person to head NADRA, a single bench of the SHC directed the federal government not to notify the chairman’s appointment till February 13.
“Till the next date of hearing, if the notification of appointment of NADRA chairman is issued, it shall be subject to the further order of this court,” the SHC ruled.
The plaintiff submitted that Interior Ministry circulated an advertisement in leading newspapers, inviting applications for appointment against the post of NADRA chairman. The age limit was fixed at 55 in a bid to exclude him from the candidature for the post as he was highly qualified, holding a Master’s degree in science with extensive experience in management and administration in different institutions, he added.
The lawyer representing the plaintiff said that his client despite his high credentials could not apply for the post in question. The court was prayed to declare the impugned advertisement as illegal, unlawful and strike it down.